Text Size

 Stay up-to-date with our newsletter. It's free & you'll be able to access our articles, stories, giveaways and savings. We only send you a summary of things you have missed and we never sell your information.

Subscribe Now
  • All About Dogs

    Product Reviews, Behavior, health, humor, quotations, facts, news and stories about dogs. Read More
  • All About Horses

    Learn about equine science, whether you're an aspiring rider or a long-time owner, we have the latest in products, breeds, and more. Read More
  • All About Birds

    If the avian life is for you, we've got a look at the best products, interesting species, and how to select and care for birds. Read More
  • All About Fish and Ponds

    If you're a novice fish and pond enthusiast, join us as we discover the newest aquariums, beautiful backyards, and plenty of informative information about fish. Read More
  • Traveling with Pets

    Be sure to check this section out before you hit the road with your pet! We've got a look at pet-friendly hotels, the guidelines of air, train, bus and auto travel, and much more. Read More
  • All About Reptiles

    A look at our cold-blooded friends and discovering how to care for these fun loving creatures! Read More
  • All About Critters

    Take a look at what it means to have ferrets, rabbits, mice, rats, guinea pigs, and more. Read More
  • All About Cats

    Product Reviews, Behavior, health, humor, quotations, feline facts, news and stories. Read More
  • Walking on the Wild Side

    Check out our animal profiles, rescues, articles, news and profiles - all about wild animals Read More
  • Behavior Problems? We have answers.

    Learn about behavior from our team of experts. Whether you have cats, dogs, reptiles, horses or birds, we can help you learn to live with them. Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • My Dogs Ate Your Elf on a Shelf

    I’m sure this post will strike fear into the hearts of Elf on the Shelf fans everywhere. It will probably give little kids nightmares and send shelf elves scurrying home to the North Pole forever. But you know I had to write it… If you’re not familiar with the concept of Elf on a Shelf, (and as an animal lover who doesn’t allow impish elves to lie idly around the house, you may not), allow me to enlighten you.  Elf on a Shelf was invented as a way to make human kids behave during the holiday season. All it does for animal lovers is create another mess to clean up, but that’s another story. As the story goes, the Elf on the Shelf is a family’s “personal elf” sent by Santa himself to keep an eye on the family’s behavior during the holiday season. Each night from Thanksgiving to Christmas, the elf reports back to Santa with either a good or a bad progress report. He does this through magic. If you touch the elf, it loses its magic and therefore can’t report to Santa, which is very bad. If you don’t touch the elf, and he successfully reports back to the toy man, you get a good stash of holiday goodies. The Elf on the Shelf also determines whether you make it onto the “naughty” or the “nice” list. If you’re nice, you’re in the clear. If you’re naughty, no gifts for you. And Elf sees everything..... When I was growing up, we had something similar - but we called it “coal in the stocking” and in cases of severe trouble, we had “wait until your dad gets home.” I guess kids don’t have that anymore. Instead they have magical elves silently judging them.

    Read More
  • Dog Etiquette: Leashes

    Recently, we posted on Facebook that we were out walking our dogs and experienced two small, off-leash dogs aggressively running to our much larger, leashed dogs. My dogs were both on-leash and controlled, but I was still annoyed. After posting my experience, I received a lot of responses - some of which were a bit negative due to the fact that one of my dogs looks like a pit bull (apparently I shouldn't be walking him?). Here’s the thing: It doesn’t matter if my dogs are pit bulls or chihuahuas or golden retrievers. In fact, I could have been walking alone, or riding a horse, or walking my cat. The fact is, dogs of any size should never run up on another person or animal without being invited to do so. It’s a common courtesy that could save your dog’s life.

    Here are just a few reasons why...

    Read More
  • Our Holiday Tradition: Footed Pajamas

    Growing up, Christmas was a special time in our house. We spent days decorating our home, we baked delectable goods for weeks prior to the event, and on Christmas Eve, we were all allowed to open one gift. The gift was always pajamas because my parents were big fans of making sure we always looked our best for Christmas day photos.

    Usually these were footed pajamas, which made us look extra cute. We called them bunnies but I'm not sure why we called them that. All I know is that they made excellent slip-n-slide wear when we slid down the stairs and they were super warm in winter. It’s a tradition that we have continued in our adult years. So, when FootedPajamas asked us if we would take a look at their matching footed pajamas for pets and people, we jumped at the chance. This is a fun way to begin the holidays - even if your kids have four legs instead of two.

    Read More
  • 10 Weird Things We Have to Explain to Visitors

    We love our animals. We mostly tolerate humans. Out of about 7+ billion people on the planet (which, let’s face it, is WAY too many) - I enjoy the company of maybe, I don’t know, maybe 26 of them.

    Eventually, though, we all have to interact with our own species. The holidays are coming up and we’ll have to socialize and attend parties and do human stuff. And let’s face it - humans aren’t so bad when they love animals as much as you do.

    When we are feeling sociable enough to allow visitors, there are invariably things that we have to explain.

    If you have animals, you probably already know about these things. But if you don't, here's what we will probably need to help you understand...

    Read More
  • Keeping You and Your Pets Safe Without Power in Winter

    The weather is moody as a wild cat and these days, no one really knows what to expect. When a cold front moves in, it can easily cause road delays making you late for dinner or freeze power lines and take out heaters.

    That means dangerous conditions for our pets, as well ourselves.

    You already know the basics: Keep your pets indoors, make sure any outdoor animals (horses, cattle, even feral cats) have access to extra calories and warm blankets, as well as covered shelter. I"m sure you also remember that you cold-weather and aquatic pets are going to require extra care until power is restored.

    But, once you get past the basics, there are a few other things to consider, particularly when it comes to birds, aquariums, reptiles and stray animals or livestock. You'll also want to look at some alternative ways to keep you and your pets entertained - and we've got plenty of suggestions for you.

    Read More
  • Winter Caretaking of Feral Cats

    We have long been supporters of feral cats and advocate the use of Trap, Neuter & Release (TNR) as a form of managing feral cat colonies. Caretakers who support these animals are a special breed as they are able to care for an animal that is unable to care back – as far as we’re concerned, that’s the truest type of love.

    It makes us very happy when we can introduce new products designed specifically to keep feral cats safe and warm, while making the caretakers job a little bit easier. Today I want to show off a specialty feral cat house and a feral cat feeder that is available for purchase. While it is entirely possible to make a feral cat shelter and feeding platform, we know that many people would prefer to buy one ready-made and Feline Furniture is our “go to” group for these products.

    Feral Cat Feeding Station : This station keeps food off the ground, offers shelter from rain and snow, and protects animals while they eat. The curved design allows for easy feeding and cleaning. On Sale Now for Only $58 thru Amazon.

    Read More
  • Animals and Their Souls

    I was talking with a co-worker the other day and he informed me that animals do not have emotions. This occurred just after he told me (the day that I put my dog of 17 yrs down) that animals do not have souls and therefore will never enjoy the concept of heaven.

    Now, this co-worker has the disadvantage of being, what I refer to, as a "bible-thumper." He is, in fact, a born-again Christian. Please bear in mind that I have nothing against Christians, nor do I have anything against religion in general. I do, however, have a problem with this co-worker passing along faulty information. Animals do have emotions and they also have souls, and I'll tell you how I know that... In over twenty years of working with animals, I have never seen a kitten duct-tape a live human baby to a freeway. I also have never seen a cat find enjoyment from setting a human on fire.

    Read More
  • Preparing Pets for Holiday Visitors

    Holidays are stressful for everyone, including your pets. If you’re into the whole “impression management” thing (and I admit that we tried for years, but have long since quit caring), you know that there's not much you can do about the chewed up couch (other than a well-placed blanket) or those pet beds scattered throughout the home, but there are things you can do to make visits from neighbors and friends less stressful for you and your pets. This article is devoted to the introvert in all of us!

    In this article, we focus on trying to keep our pets from jumping on visitors (easier than you may think), properly introducing our pets to company, training children on how to approach and work with animals, and keeping everyone (as well as your home) smelling fresh.

    Post your Priorities

    Hang your favorite sign at the door so that everyone knows not only that you have pets, but also the right of way. It's also good to remind people that the cats should never be let out (no matter what they tell you) and that your pets live with you, but visitors are temporary. These are a few of the signs we like.

    Read More
  • Feline Navidad

    The holiday season is upon us; surrounding us with good will, lots of chill, and neighbors in competition to see who can place the most strands of lights into one electrical outlet. We wear cheerful holiday colors of red and green, and place artificial reindeer antlers and Santa hats on the heads of our unhappy pets.

    I love the holiday season. I love the brisk, cool winter days of the desert and the happiness that seems to exude from my fellow drivers as they allow me to cut in front of them during rush hour. And I especially love the thousands of holiday lights that adorn my neighbors’ homes. But even more than that, I love to watch my “anti-Christmas” cats struggle to bring them to the ground.

    Yes, this is the time of year that we gently place delicate handmade baubles in our windows and fragile glass ornaments on our newly cut Christmas trees.

    Some of us do it more than once…

    Read More
  • 10 Possible Reasons Your Cat Is Behaving Badly

    If your healthy cat is suddenly peeing on your bed or spraying in your office, if he's taken to running around at strange hours of the night, or mewing inconsolably all night, there are several possible explanations. Of course, you must always take them in for a vet check to eliminate any possible health conditions like blockages or disease. But health problems have been eliminated and your cat is still acting out inappropriately, here are some possible explanations.

    Room Deodorizers

    Everyone has probably used a room deodorizer in their home, particularly if they have cats. One of the most common places to put diffusers and other such items are near the litter-box. Avoid doing this! It can cause undue stress on  your cats and even make it difficult for them to use the litter box.

    Solve This: Instead of placing a deodorizer or diffuser near your cat's box, try one of the helpful Litter Box Deodorizers on the market. You can also tape live charcoal on the side or the bottom of the box or sprinkle the box with baking soda prior to putting cat litter inside.

    Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10

Tipping Guide for Pet Professionals

Gratuities can be a bone of contention among many pet parents. They shouldn't be, though. We entrust others with the Read More

Swiffer and BarkBox Remind New Pet Parents that #ShedHappens

Everyone remembers their first pet. Whether it was a guinea pig, hamster, dog or a cat - nothing beats that feeling Read More

Police Dog Killed in Anti-Terrorist Raids #RIPDiesel

Photo Credit: CNNPhoto Credit: CNNThe Paris attacks have had a profound effect on everyone in the world. The animal world Read More

How to Clean Your Dog's Ears with #BayerExpertCare

This week we were asked to try out a few new products from the Bayer® ExpertCare™ lineup. For those who Read More

Make Holidays Fun with #BLUESantaSnacks for Dogs

The holidays are rapidly approaching and we’re looking for clever ways to share the holiday joy with our canine friends. Read More

Wild DIY Treat Containers for Dog Parks with #NaturalBalance

We’re always hunting for new ways to give away treats. This is a fun way to stretch a bag of Read More
  • 1
  • 2

Welcome to PetsWeekly

User Rating: 0 / 5

Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Like us, dogs benefit from stretching: Our muscle cells work the same. This fact inspired the Foster sisters -- Sasha, a certified canine rehabilitation therapist, and Ashley, a certified pet dog trainer -- to apply 20 years of research on human stretching to the canine world. The result is their book, The Healthy Way to Stretch Your Dog. Below, Sasha Foster weighs in on the do’s and don’ts of keeping your adult dog’s muscles supple.

Why You Should Stretch Your Dog

It may help to improve overall fitness Foster says stretching your dog helps maintain joint function. One reason is because stretching produces a muscle signaling molecule called nitric oxide, according to studies on animals conducted by University of Michigan researchers Nicole Lockhart and Susan Brooks.

When this molecule is present, blood flow tends to increase, inflammation is kept in better check, and force is decreased during certain muscle contractions, all of which can aid joints and support limb function.


Stretching may prevent tendinitis

Stretching can also prevent soft-tissue injuries like tendinitis, which Labradors and working dogs are particularly susceptible to sustaining.

Stretching may reduce back pain Stretching can be used to manage back pain that occurs when muscles in the lower back become tight, Foster says.

Stretching can alleviates arthritis Stretching can additionally decrease the achiness and stiffness often experienced by middle-aged to older dogs, and can even minimize the pain of arthritis. “Arthritis occurs when the bones are rubbing against each other in the joint,” explains Foster. “If the muscles are nice and long, the joint is less compressed.”

When to Stretch Your Dog

Stretch your dog two to three times per week for 10 to 15 minutes at a time -- but not until after your dog is at least 2 years old. “You do not want to stretch a puppy because its growth plates are still in flux,” explains Foster. For obvious reasons, you should also avoid stretching a dog with an acute injury. Stretch your dog after it exercises. Research on human athletes has demonstrated that muscles need to warm up before being stretched. That principle is no different for dogs. “Stretching before the body is heated can cause injury. We want the muscles nice and warm -- after a walk or a swim -- before we stretch,” says Foster.

Where to Stretch Your Dog

Stretch your dog anywhere you would do yoga. “Your dog should be in a relaxing environment before you begin,” emphasizes Foster. She recommends that your pet lies down somewhere quiet and that you initially stroke or rock your furry friend before you begin, to encourage muscle relaxation.

How to Stretch Your Dog

Once your dog is lying down and relaxed, put your hand over the joint you will be manipulating. “If you’re stretching the shoulder, put your hand over the shoulder joint in order to relax the muscle. The nerves that turn the reflex off and on know your hand is there and keep the muscle from contracting,” explains Foster. Next, lift the limb parallel to the floor and move it slowly in the direction of the stretch. For example, if you’re working with the shoulder, first move the limb toward the nose -- it should take three to five seconds to get there. Once you’re there and feel a slight resistance, hold for 30 seconds before moving the limb back to where it started and lowering it to the floor. Shoulder and hip joints should ultimately be moved in four different directions: forward toward the nose, back toward the tail, up toward the ceiling, and down toward the floor. Elbow and knee joints can only be flexed and extended. “Joints should only be stretched within their range,” says Foster. “Your dog’s joints do what yours do, so use your common sense.” Foster emphasizes that stretching your pet will not only benefit its physical condition but also its emotional state. “You know how you feel after a good yoga class? Dogs feel that way after stretching,” she says. “It calms them down and just feels good.”

Other Articles You May Enjoy:

Author: Guest
About the Author
Learn more about posting as a guest on PetsWeekly.com by reviewing our writer submission guide. We offer a very limited number of guest posts each year.

New in Dogs

Giveaways & Contests

New in Cats


Natural Pet

New in Horses

New in Aquatics

New in PetsGEEKly

Subscribe to PetsWeekly for the latest pet news, giveaways, and more!    Stay informed!